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Compliance Updates

Belgium Makes Legal Age to Gamble at 21 from September

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Belgium regulators have made new amendments to the gambling laws in the country with the legal gambling age from 18 to 21. This move aims to align the age requirements for sports betting, arcades and bingo with those already in place for land-based casinos. The revised regulations are set to come into effect on September 1, 2024, and have been outlined in a press release by the Gaming Commission, as published in the Belgium Official Gazette.

The decision to increase the legal gambling age in Belgium is part of a broader effort to prioritise player safety and well-being. By raising the age limit, the authorities aim to provide a more secure environment for individuals engaging in gambling activities. The new legislation includes several other measures designed to safeguard players and ensure responsible gambling practices:

  • Prohibition of Devices “3.3”: The revised regulations include a ban on the use of specific gambling devices, known as “3.3” devices. This prohibition aims to eliminate potential risks associated with these devices and promote safer gambling experiences.
  • Ban on Cumulation of Online Licences: The new laws also prohibit the cumulation of online licenses on the same website. This measure seeks to prevent operators from exploiting multiple licenses to maximise their reach and potentially exploit vulnerable players.
  • Ban on Gifts/Bonuses/Free Games: Another noteworthy provision is the ban on offering gifts, bonuses, or free games to players. This restriction aims to minimise the potential for excessive gambling and the associated risks it may pose to vulnerable individuals.
  • Ban on Advertising Games of Chance: The revised regulations also introduce a ban in principle on advertising games of chance. This change intends to reduce the exposure of individuals to gambling advertisements, particularly targeting vulnerable populations, such as minors and problem gamblers.
  • Age Limit of 21 Years and Refund in Case of No Control: To ensure effective age verification and compliance with the new regulations, individuals who fail to provide proof of age will be eligible for refunds. This provision emphasises the importance of age control measures and strengthens the responsibility of operators in verifying the age of their customers.

The raised legal gambling age in Belgium will have implications for both operators and players within the country’s gambling industry. For operators, it means implementing necessary changes to comply with the new regulations and adapt their marketing strategies to adhere to the ban on advertising games of chance. Additionally, operators will need to ensure strict age verification processes to prevent minors from accessing gambling services.

Players, particularly those between the ages of 18 and 21, will be directly affected by the increase in the legal gambling age. Those who were previously eligible to participate in certain gambling activities may now need to wait until they reach the age of 21. However, it is essential for players to understand that this change is intended to protect them from any potential harm associated with underage gambling. Responsible gambling practices and adherence to legal age limits are crucial for maintaining a safe and enjoyable gambling environment.

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While the decision to raise the legal gambling age has been made with the best intentions, there are concerns and criticisms regarding certain aspects of the revised regulations. One notable concern is the potential for the new advertising restrictions to inadvertently benefit illegal operators. The Belgium Association of Gaming Operators (BAGO) has expressed opposition to a total ban on gambling advertising, arguing that it could make it more challenging for consumers to differentiate between legal and illegal operators.

Tom De Clercq, Chair of BAGO, emphasises the need for targeted advertising limitations rather than a blanket ban. BAGO advocates for limiting advertising, particularly through traditional media, but warns against the potential negative consequences of a total ban. They believe that a comprehensive approach that combines responsible advertising practices and effective regulation is key to maintaining a healthy and well-regulated gambling industry.

Compliance Updates

Elys BMG Group Announces Approval for The Ugly Mug Sportsbook in Washington, DC.

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Elys BMG Group announced that The Ugly Mug in Washington D.C. has been granted provisional approval from the District of Columbia Office of Lottery and Gaming Regulation and Oversight Division (DCOLG) to open its sportsbook at 723 8th St. SE. As the fourth privately owned sportsbook venue in the District powered by Elys’ innovative Gameboard betting technology, The Ugly Mug stands as a testament to Elys’ commitment to bringing cutting-edge solutions to local businesses and sports enthusiasts.

The grand opening for The Ugly Mug sportsbook is anticipated to occur during the week of April 27th. Elys will unveil the grand opening festivities, promotions, and events as the date draws closer.

With easy access to sports wagering and a classic American menu in a relaxed setting, The Ugly Mug sportsbook is set to become a premier destination in the Navy Yard region of Washington D.C. and is another step forward for Elys becoming the leading betting technology provider for neighborhood sportsbooks in the US.

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Compliance Updates

GoldenRace is now certified in the Netherlands

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GoldenRace, global provider of award-winning Virtual Sports and betting solutions, has recently obtained a certification for its highly acclaimed Virtual Sports and Games in the Dutch market.

GoldenRace successfully navigated the stringent regulatory landscape of the Netherlands, and now will be providing its impressive betting products into the Online Dutch market, which will be an important advancement in our operational expansion.

The Netherlands betting scene is on the cusp of a substantial growth phase and with GoldenRace’s latest certification, we introduce to the Dutch market a range of highly popular games tailored to desktop and mobile, in both scheduled and on-demand modes.

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Among the offer, players will enjoy our most-played Virtual Football line-up – including Football Single, Leagues, World Cup and Euro Champions-, adrenaline-pumping 3×3 Basketball and MMA and top-notch races as Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing and Grand Prix Indianapolis 60. Last but not least, our Number Games, such as Spin2Win. All ready to captivate Dutch players.

The post GoldenRace is now certified in the Netherlands appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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Compliance Updates

MGA: Update to the Incident Reporting Requirements

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The Malta Gaming Authority would like to inform its licensees of updates made to the Incident Report mechanism available through the Licensee Portal The information hereunder outlines relevant guidance and procedures for the submission of an Incident Report through the updated reporting instrument entitled the ‘Technical – Information Security Incident’.

As mandated by Articles 37(2)(c) and (d) of the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive (Directive 3 of 2018), “Licensees shall notify the Authority forthwith, and in any case no later than three (3) working days after, the following:

(c) Any breach of the licensee’s information security that adversely affects the confidentiality of information relating to players;

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(d) Any breach of the licensee’s information security that precludes players from accessing their accounts for a period exceeding twelve (12) hours.”

In this regard, Licensees are obliged to submit an Incident Report in order to notify the Authority of the circumstances relating to an information security breach that meet the above specified criteria. Additionally, Licensees are advised to remain mindful of any further obligations emanating from the General Data Protection Regulation (EU/2016/679) and any relevant legislation.

The Technical – Information Security Incident option will be accessible through the “New/Change” dropdown menu via the Portal. Upon selection, users will be directed to the applicable sections of the ‘Technical – Information Security Incident’ where all compulsory fields and any relevant documentation must be submitted to the Authority.

Upon submission, the Incident Report shall undergo review by the Authority. Any missing information that may be identified by the Authority, shall be requested accordingly from the Licensee. It is imperative that any pending clarifications are addressed in a timely manner.

If no further clarifications are deemed necessary by the Authority, the Incident Report will be closed off accordingly, and any relevant documentation will be securely filed for record-keeping purposes.

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Any Incident Reports left in ‘Draft’ form (i.e. opened but not effectively submitted) for a period of ninety (90) days shall be automatically discarded.

The post MGA: Update to the Incident Reporting Requirements appeared first on European Gaming Industry News.

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